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Bali Nine clemency rejected

Andrew Chan Bali Nine
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Bali Nine member Andrew Chan has had his clemency plea against a death sentence rejected by Indonesian president Joko Widodo.

Chan is set to face an Indonesian firing squad with fellow ringleader Myuran Sukumaran, unless an extraordinary court appeal or diplomatic efforts succeed.

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A Denpasar District Court spokesman made the announcement about the plea rejection on Thursday, which the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs has confirmed.

Upon hearing the news, Chan prayed before returning to care for a sick inmate, lawyer Julian McMahon told Sky News on Friday.

All legal appeals against Chan’s death sentence for drug trafficking have now been officially exhausted.

Earlier this month Sukumaran received notice that his appeal had been turned down.

The pair, who are both from Sydney, attempted to traffic more than eight kilograms of heroin to Australia in 2005.

Mr Widodo has vowed not to grant clemency for drug-related offences and on Sunday six convicts – including five foreigners – were executed.

Indonesian attorney-general HM Prasetyo last week said the timing of Sukamaran’s execution depended on the outcome of Chan’s clemency bid.

He said because Sukamaran and Chan committed the crime together, they must be executed together, and the date of Sukamaran’s execution depended on whether Chan received clemency.

Hasoloan Sianturi, spokesman for Denpasar District Court, displays Clemency Presidential Decree for Andrew Chan. Photo: AAP

Julian McMahon, the Australian lawyer for Chan and Sukumaran, had called for the decision on Chan’s clemency to be indefinitely delayed.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has written to the Indonesian president asking him to show mercy to the two men, saying there was evidence they were genuinely remorseful.

“I don’t want to pre-empt what may or may not happen afterwards, but I think these two are well and truly reformed characters and I hope the Indonesians will accept that, acknowledge it,” Mr Abbott said.

“I hope that the evidence of genuine remorse, of genuine rehabilitation, means that even at this late stage pleas for clemency might be accepted.”

However, Mr Abbott said he would not let the case of the two men affect the relationship between the two countries.

Bali Nine pair likely to face firing squad, unless extraordindary appeal accepted

Sukumaran and Chan will face an Indonesian firing squad together unless an extraordinary court appeal or diplomatic efforts succeed.

With Bali court officials on Thursday confiring presidential clemency had been denied to Chan, this extinguishes his last hope of being spared the death penalty for the 2005 heroin trafficking plot.

Convicted drug smugglers Myuran Sukumaran (L) and Andrew Chan. Photo: AAP

Denpasar District Court spokesman Hasoloan Sianturi said the letter arrived at 1.20pm local time on Thursday.

“The letter’s content is Presidential Decree Number 9/G year 2015 regarding clemency rejection for Andrew Chan,” Mr Sianturi said.

“The head of the district court then told me to register and make a disposition, and tell the convicted.

“The presidential decree was for only one convict, Andrew Chan.”

Lawyers for the Sydney pair are preparing an application for a judicial review, an extraordinary appeal to reconsider their case.

Earlier on Thursday, Jakarta-based lawyer Todung Mulya Lubis and Melbourne-based barrister McMahon met Chan and Sukumaran at Kerobokan prison.

Mr Lubis told reporters they had discussed plans for a judicial review, a mechanism that’s in dispute among Indonesia’s courts.

The constitutional court has allowed for prisoners to request more than one judicial review to re-examine their circumstances, but the supreme court argues the reviews should only be considered once.

Mr Lubis said the move is about ensuring all avenues available to Sukumaran and Chan are explored.

“The constitutional court realises the courts must give the maximum … effort to ensure all convicted people receive justice,” Mr Lubis said.

Chan, 31, and Sukumaran, 33, desperately want a second chance to use their lives for good, he said.

“I believe there have been lots of changes within them and I had truly hoped that their clemency requests would be granted by the president.”

Bali courts to decide

While the judicial review submission is being prepared, Bali’s courts are also considering whether the pair could personally front the court for the hearing.

President Joko Widodo argues Indonesia is in the grips of a drug crisis that needs the “shock therapy” of enacting the death penalty. Photo: AAP

Mr Lubis says the petitioner is usually required to front the courts, but in this case, the prisoners are from the super-maximum section and would require additional security.

The courts will make a decision next week.

Mr Widodo argues Indonesia is in the grips of a drug crisis that needs the “shock therapy” of enacting the death penalty.

Mr Abbott has urged Mr Widodo to show mercy to the two “well and truly reformed” Australians.

Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said Labor would continue to support government representations for both Chan and Sukumaran.

“We urge clemency for anyone facing the death penalty, whoever and wherever they may be,” Mr Shorten said.

Case for two men ‘not hopeless’, advocate says

Brigid Delaney, the co-founder of the Mercy Campaign, which had sought to have the condemned men’s penalty converted to life imprisonment, said she believed the lawyers were investigating a final option to save the men from the firing squad.

“I believe that there is one more final appeal that they can do,” she said.

“I haven’t spoken to them about that but I don’t think Andrew and Myuran’s case is hopeless.

“While there is life, there is hope and people haven’t downed tools and stopped working on this case.”

with ABC and AAP

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